Dirty For Me

Dirty For Me

by Jackie Ashenden

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781496703910
Publisher: Kensington
Publication date: 07/26/2016
Series: Motor City Royals , #1
Sold by: Penguin Random House Publisher Services
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 300
Sales rank: 87,582
File size: 367 KB

About the Author

Jackie Ashenden lives in Auckland, New Zealand, with her husband, the inimitable Dr. Jax, two kids and two cats. When she's not torturing alpha males and their stroppy heroines, she can be found drinking chocolate martinis, reading anything she can lay her hands on, posting random crap on her blog, or being forced to go mountain biking with her husband. Jackie also writes the dark, sexy contemporary Nine Circles romance series for St. Martin's Press. Visit her at jackieashenden.com.

Read an Excerpt

Dirty For Me

By Jackie Ashenden


Copyright © 2016 Jackie Ashenden
All rights reserved.
ISBN: 978-1-4967-0391-0


"Here?" Tamara Lennox turned around to give her friend Rose an incredulous look as they got out of the taxi. "Really?"

Rose's brown eyes glittered in the neon-painted darkness of the Detroit night. She was looking at the building in front them, a big, broken-down warehouse, its brick walls thick with graffiti and some of the windows smashed and boarded up. A narrow doorway led into the building, a small sign above that read ROYAL ROAD GYM — the only signal they'd reached the right place.

"Yeah." Rose gave her a naughty grin. "Really."

"Great," Tamara muttered.

She liked Rose, she really did. She hadn't made many friends at Lennox Investments where she'd been interning for the past six months, because she hadn't had time to make any. She'd been concentrating too hard on work. Yet Rose had brushed aside all her refusals, approaching friendship with Tamara the way she approached everything — aggressively. Yeah, Rose was great. But there were times when Tamara really questioned the other woman's judgment.

Such as now, as they stood on the sidewalk in the middle of one of Detroit's shadier neighborhoods, on a hot Wednesday night, and all because Rose had heard about the even hotter instructor who taught women's self-defense classes.

Tamara let out a breath, staring at the shitty-looking building ahead of them. Well, she couldn't say she was surprised. Rose wasn't serious about much except when it came to men. And she was deadly serious about men.

Her friend narrowed her gaze at Tamara, giving her outfit a disapproving glance. "You should be joining in, you know."

Tamara pulled a face. Obviously the soft, dark blue designer jeans and white cashmere blend T-shirt she'd gotten on a Barneys shopping trip the last time she'd been in New York visiting Robert weren't exactly appropriate self-defense wear. But then she wasn't the one taking the classes.

"Moral support only," Tamara said, closing her fingers around the strap of her Louis Vuitton purse. "I told you. That's the only reason I'm here." Starting to feel a little bit too downtown and out of place, she carefully turned the distinctive monogram on the flap of her purse inward so it was less conspicuous.

"And I appreciate it, Tam, you know I do." Rose turned toward the gym doorway. "But what are you going to do for an hour? I don't think waiting on the sidewalk would work around here."

That went without saying. Here and there, Tamara could see signs of revitalization: a new building a couple of blocks away, the looming spike of a crane signaling construction, a cleaned-up old building with bright new signs flashing in the windows. But there were also too many boarded-up doorways, broken-up sidewalks, and seedy-looking sex shops to make a woman feel safe waiting around at night by herself.

A strange little thrill crawled down her spine, a prowling restlessness pacing under her skin.

She couldn't say why she'd come with Rose tonight, because she had a lot of work she had to get through and Royal Road wasn't exactly a top tourist destination. She wasn't too keen on the thought of learning self-defense either. Getting hot and sweaty with a bunch of strangers didn't thrill her and she avoided gym classes for precisely that reason.

Yet as soon as her friend had mentioned it, something had shivered through her, that restlessness. It had been dogging her for weeks now and where it had come from she didn't know. But she'd suddenly felt a little suffocated by her apartment. Like the walls were closing in. Like she needed to get out, feel some of that vibrant Detroit energy run through her like a current. Recharge herself.

She'd been working too hard.

Perhaps she should have tried to dress down a little more. Then again, it wasn't like she was swanning around in a cocktail dress. It was only jeans and a tee.

"I've got my phone." Tamara patted her purse. "I'll catch up on some work e-mails."

Rose shook her head. "You're way too dedicated, man."

Of course she was. She had to be. If she wanted a permanent position at Lennox Investments she had to work twice as hard as anyone else because her dad owned it. And she did want a permanent position. She hadn't worked her butt off at Stanford for nothing.

"I'm behind," she said. "It's no big deal."

"Okay, okay. Fine. But if that man in there is as hot as the girls in HR were saying, you might be finding your own way home, know what I mean?"

Tamara rolled her eyes. That was pretty much a given when going out with Rose. "So why did you drag me down here then?"

"Hey, I'm thinking of you, too, okay? Maybe the dude's got a friend or something."

"I have a boyfriend already, Rose. I don't know how many times I've told you that."

"What? That guy in New York? Whom we've never even seen?"

"Yes. That guy in New York." Tamara tried to keep the exasperation out of her voice. It wasn't the first time she'd had this conversation with Rose. "And you've never seen him because he's in New York."

Rose waved a hand. "Whatever. Just trying to help a girl out." She turned and started heading toward the doorway.

Tamara shook her head and followed Rose inside the building, stepping into the hallway.

It was just about as rundown as the exterior, narrow and dark, the floorboards dented and dirty. There was also a smell, of sweat and unwashed towels, and something else unpleasant Tamara couldn't identify. She wrinkled her nose at it. Why the hell couldn't Rose have found a hot guy giving self-defense classes somewhere else? Like at one of the cleaner, brighter gyms in her area? Why did it have to be in one of Detroit's meaner neighborhoods?

Rose pushed open a door that read GYM and Tamara let out a silent sigh of relief.

Light flooded a massive open space with concrete block walls and some exercise machines scattered around. There were a couple of punching bags hanging from the high ceiling and a boxing ring down one end, a water cooler and a bank of shelves with various different exercise gear stored on it standing near a wall.

Well, it wasn't at all like the polished, boutique gyms she was used to, and that sweaty, musty smell was still hanging around distastefully, but at least there was light.

Tamara looked around, hoping to find a chair or a bench or at least something to sit down on where she could wait.

Alas, there was nothing but the bare, dirty wooden floor.

A group of around ten women were already gathered in a circle near the ring, their eyes fixed on the man standing in the middle of the group, who turned as Rose and Tamara entered.

"Holy shit," Rose breathed. "The HR girls weren't kidding."

Eyes the color of polished steel swept them a glance, sharp as a sword blade. "You here for the self-defense class?" The man's voice was husky, gritty like fine sand, a kind of energy running through it. Like Detroit itself, always moving, changing. Full of punchy vitality and a stubborn determination.

And for some reason it made Tamara's breath catch.

"Uh, yeah." Rose was already walking forward, dumping her purse near the shelves. "Sorry about that. Traffic was a night-mare."

Tamara couldn't stop staring at the instructor. God, he was beautiful. His face was all perfect lines, straight nose and hard jaw, high cheekbones, a long, gorgeous mouth. And yet marring all that perfection were the stitches through one dark, winged eyebrow, the bruise along one side of that classical jawline. A half-healed cut marring the perfect shape of his lower lip.

A shiver brushed over her skin, though she couldn't fathom why. Since when had she ever gotten off on scars?

The women shifted around him, an unfocused blur as the circle parted and he came toward them, moving with the lethal, fluid grace of a leopard.

Her heart began to pick up speed.

There was something about him, as if the restless energy in his voice moved along the surface of his skin, too. A barely leashed violence that pulsed in the air around him like electricity from a live wire. He almost crackled with it.

That, combined with the marks on his face made him ... disturbing in a way she didn't quite understand. She found herself rooted to the spot as he came closer, his strange, glittering silver gaze catching hers, a blade running straight through her.

This is what you've been searching for. What you didn't even realize you wanted.

The thought registered dimly in her brain, a strange fear gathering in the pit of her stomach.

Weird. Why would she have been searching for him? She didn't even know the guy. And besides, how could a man in a tight-fitting, faded black tee and black sweatpants be threatening?

Yet ... somehow, he was. Projecting violence and darkness and danger like a storm front, switching something primitive in her brain into fight-or-flight mode.

She held the strap of her purse in a death grip.

He stopped abruptly in front of them and when his gaze switched from her to Rose, it felt like she'd been released from heavy chains.

"Traffic?" he demanded. "At this time of night?"

Rose, who was never cowed, blinked. "Um ... Yeah."

"Bullshit. For future reference, if you're gonna be late, I don't wanna see you. Understand me?"

Rose all but shuffled her feet like a teenager. "Sorry. I didn't —"

"What's your name?"


"Rose, I'm Ezekiel West. You can call me Zee. Now get your ass in the circle."

Without a single protest, Rose did as she was told. Which was unheard of, if you knew Rose.

Zee switched his gaze back to Tamara and again the air seemed to thin around her, the ground unsteady under her feet. "What about you?" He swept a look down her body, his cut lip curling as he took in her preppy jeans and T-shirt. "You here for the class or what?"

"No," Tamara said carefully, forcing her voice to work. "I'm just waiting for my friend."

His gaze came back to hers. And for a moment it felt like he could see right inside her. Right down to her bones, to her soul.

It made the fear turn over inside her, panic closing long fingers around her throat.

What the hell? He can't see inside you, idiot. Pull yourself together.

What was wrong with her? This guy was seriously freaking her out for some reason she didn't understand, and she did not appreciate it one bit.

"Uh-huh." He was still staring at her, the electricity radiating from him, crackling over her skin. Burning right through her clothes. Holy crap ... "No one comes into my gym to do nothing," he said flatly. "Either you get involved or you get out."

Arrogant bastard. She was used to arrogance from Robert's friends, or from some of the people in the social circles her family moved in. But certainly not from some guy in sweatpants with bruises all over his face, in a shitty part of town.

Still, it wouldn't do to be rude. A Lennox was never rude.

"I'm sorry," she said coolly, "but I'm not dressed for the class. And I'm certainly not waiting outside in the dark."

He continued to stare, the sheer intensity of his focus unnerving.

Resisting the urge to lick her dry lips, she tried a polite smile instead. "Do you have anywhere I can sit?"

He said nothing for what seemed like a very long time. Then, with an abruptness that was only just short of rude, he turned away. "Nothing but the ground, pretty girl," he said carelessly over his shoulder.

It was not a compliment, that much she knew.

Tamara gritted her teeth and looked around for somewhere that maybe had less dirt on it than where she was standing. There wasn't anywhere.

So she sat gingerly on the floorboards, her back against the concrete wall, her purse held tight to her side. Her heart still beating hard and fast.

Crazy. This was crazy. It just made no sense at all.

She'd never met a man — anyone — she'd had such an instant and strong reaction to, and why it was this guy causing her such a chemical imbalance she had no idea. For God's sake, Robert was just as good-looking yet she'd never even felt that way abouthim. And he was her damn boyfriend.

The concrete was rough against her back, no doubt snagging on the fine cashmere of her tee, but Tamara ignored it as she got her phone out of her purse and began going through her e-mails.

Another one from her mother, long and full of the usual boring society gossip.

Zee's husky, gritty voice drifted in the big empty space of the gym and Tamara couldn't help herself, looking up from her phone screen to see what was going on.

He was demonstrating some move or other, at first fast and fluid, then slowing it right down so the women could see each separate movement.

She couldn't take her eyes off him. It was as if he'd taken that restless, violent energy and channeled it into a series of precise shifts of his body. A hold. A pivot. A kick. A turn. All of it measured and controlled. All of it powerful.

He must be a professional fighter. Martial arts or whatever.

God, she shouldn't have been looking. She'd always abhorred violence and she was inclined to go with her instincts on this one. If her gut said the guy was bad news, he probably was. And boy was this one bad news.

Yet she still didn't look away. Couldn't.

His T-shirt was starting to stick to his body in the heat of the gym, outlining the hard, cut muscles beneath. Broad shoulders and narrow hips, his skin tanned and smooth and ... inked. There were what looked like flames extending from under the sleeve of his tee, licking around the powerful muscles of his right upper arm. On his left the coils of what looked to be a serpent.

Well, of course he had tattoos. Didn't all professional fighters have them? They weren't her thing at all so why she was staring at them?

Zee had stopped in the middle of the circle, still talking, running an absent hand over black hair shorn close to his skull. The women were clearly all enthralled, including Rose, who didn't even glance in Tamara's direction.

Tamara wrenched her gaze away and concentrated her attention on her phone.

No. No more looking. She had work to do and she wasn't going to be distracted.

An interminable time later, the buzz of chatter rose and when she glanced up, she saw the group of women were starting to break up. A few of them were gathered around Zee and the looks on their faces were openly avid. Rose — unsurprisingly — was one of them. The rest had drifted over to the pile of purses near the water cooler, talking among themselves as they started gathering up their belongings.

Tamara got to her feet, brushing off the dust and hoping there were no permanent stains on her jeans. Her butt was numb from sitting on the floor and quite frankly she couldn't wait to get back to her downtown apartment and finish the spreadsheet she'd been working on, then get started on the presentation Scott, her asshole boss, had told her to put together. Focus on her path to success; that was the key.

And maybe not the hot self-defense instructor.

No. Especially not him.

Soon enough, Rose went to get her purse, slinging it over her shoulder as she came over to where Tamara stood. Her cheeks were pink, her forehead sheened with sweat, and she was looking a little sheepish. "Hey, a couple of the others are going to a new club that's just opened near here and I thought I'd go along. Do you mind? Or you know, if you want to come ..."

This wasn't entirely unexpected behavior from Rose and Tamara tried not to feel annoyed, but irritation sat in her gut all the same. Fantastic. So not only had she had to sit for an hour on a dusty gym floor, fighting the almost overwhelming urge to keep glancing at Zee, but now she was being ditched in favor of a club.

This evening was getting better and better.

"Thanks for the offer, but no. I've got a spreadsheet I need to finish." She forced a smile on her face. "Besides, I don't want to get in the way of ..." She directed a glance toward Zee. "You know ..."

Rose pulled a face. "Zee apparently doesn't do the chicks in his classes, or so Katie over there tells me. So if I want to hook up tonight, it's the club or nothing."

"You really have to hook up tonight?"

Rose gave her an incredulous look. "Is that really a serious question? I haven't gotten laid in, like, two weeks. A girl has needs." A naughty grin spread over her face. "Oh and I hear this club is a serious bad-boy magnet and you know how I love a bad boy."


Excerpted from Dirty For Me by Jackie Ashenden. Copyright © 2016 Jackie Ashenden. Excerpted by permission of KENSINGTON PUBLISHING CORP..
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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Dirty For Me 4.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 16 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Loved it
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Fast read couldn't put it down
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Loved this book! Couldnt put it down and read it in one sitting
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I greatly enjoyed this book! A sexy read with a surprising twist! Highly recommend!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Great series-looking forward to next book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Excellent! Chemistry is hot!!
Sandy-thereadingcafe More than 1 year ago
3.5 stars---DIRTY FOR ME is the first installment in Jackie Ashendon’s contemporary, adult MOTOR CITY ROYALS erotic, romance series. This is bad boy mechanic/MMA fighter Ezekiel ‘Zee’ Chase, and corporate intern Tamara Lennox’s story line. Told from dual third person perspectives (Zee and Tamara) DIRTY FOR ME focuses on the building relationship between two broken souls-Ezekiel ‘Zee’ Chase born into a Detroit crime family where his father rules with an iron fist; and Tamara Lennox- a privileged young woman whose own past is riddled with a dark family secret. When Tamara accompanies her best friend to a late night, self-defense class for woman, in one of the seediest neighborhoods of Detroit, our heroine finds herself immediately attracted to the instructor-a tattooed, bad boy named Zee Chase whose attraction to Tamara is equally as strong and palpable. What ensues is a relationship based solely on $ex that looks deeper into the past of both of our story line characters. Tamara is about accept a marriage proposal from a man she does not love to pay a debt she owes her family; and Zee’s past comes back physically demanding a return to the family fold. The relationship between Tamara and Zee is initially based only on $ex. Tamara wants to forget about her past and her potential future; and Zee is an MMA fighter who has his pick of any woman but Tamara has locked onto his heart and soul. The $ex scenes are graphic, aggressive and intense but I did not feel the emotional connection between the couple-they both wanted $ex and Tamara continued to return night after night in the hopes of more from Zee Chase. Zee struggles with his emotions and is reluctant to show even a softer version of himself fearing to let go would mean dropping his defenses against the outside world. There are a number of secondary and supporting characters including all of Zee’s coworkers at the local garage: garage owner Gideon, tattoo artist Zoe, and mechanic Rachel-all former street kids who have banded together as a family. A fifth member of their rag-tag family -Levi -is currently in prison awaiting early release-Levi and Rachel’s story will be told next in Wrong For Me. We are introduced to Tamara’s best friend Rose and our heroine’s soon to be fiancé/ex-fiance Robert, as well as Tamara’s boss Scott who is trying to make Tamara’s life as miserable as possible. Tamara’s parents claim to want the best for their daughter but Tamara is being forced into an impossible situation. Zee’s corrupt father Joshua forces his son to make a choice- a choice between friendship or blood. The world building focuses on dysfunctional family dynamics, dark secrets, betrayal and revenge. The conflict between Zee and his father ended rather abruptly and without too much angst or aggression which under the circumstance would have ended differently in the real world. I would like to see more of Zee and Tamara in a future story line as our heroine has rejected her previous life for a man whose own life is dangerous and dark. The premise is entertaining; the characters are colorful and animated; the romance is sexually graphic and, at times, almost needy in emotion and temperament. Some readers may take exception to the heroine’s ‘cheating’ on a man she does not love.
Pure_Jonel More than 1 year ago
From the epically drool-worthy pic on the cover to the very last sentence Ashenden had me completely captivated. From hard core fights to dark and dangerous men, this novel has it all; right along with a healthy dose of extra steamy chemistry and sex scenes that both add to the story and make the pages sizzle. This is all backed up by vibrant descriptions that allow you to both see and feel your surroundings. This is writing that really engages your senses. The hard core characters really pop in this novel. The aura of both danger and safety that surround Zee had me drooling and glued to the pages. The hardness emanating from him makes it all even more tantalizing. At the same time, the hints of vulnerability make him oh so very real. Tamara’s ability to bend yet to stand up for herself were remarkable. I simultaneously felt for her and wanted to cheer her on through her journey of self discovery. This was an earth quaking, soul shattering start to a series that I can’t get enough of. I definitely wouldn’t hesitate to recommend it to others. Please note that I received a complimentary copy of this work in exchange for an honest review.
JeneratedReviews More than 1 year ago
Dirty For Me, By Jackie Ashenden, pulled out one surprise after another and the story was that much better for it! Sexy and gritty there was no holding back on Ms. Ashenden's characterizations. Zee had a past he wanted to keep there but when his attraction to society girl Tamara takes over the inevitable was engrossing. With a strong grasp at delving into hard to reach emotional places this work was exceptional. If you are looking for a well written dark and sensual romance the first book in the Motor City Royal series will take you there and leave you wanting more from this talented author! *I received this ARC in exchange for an honest review.*
belllla More than 1 year ago
Dirty for me is incredible love story. It is written very interesting. The author did have both of the POV interesting intertwined through the story. All I can say is: Zee and Tamara what an interesting characters! What an interesting background and their past/present! What a hell of the chemistry between them. And what a beautiful love story and their end. I loved how the story was darker, how their feelings were dark. I really loved how beautiful that darkness connect them and out the negative come such a powerful and strong emotion called love. The story was unexpected and interesting until the end. I am really curious what will happens in the next one. *ARC provided by Netgalley in exchange for an honest review
AFOX0 More than 1 year ago
I could not put this down…..4.5 stars! Dirty for Me is an evocative story which is, on one hand, tough and gritty, and on the other hand, a heartfelt, deeply emotional awakening of two people who have found each other amidst the emptiness of their lives. Both of them living lives, pretending to be what others want them to be. Zee Chase ran away from his past, a past entrenched in crime. He wants nothing to do with the wealth and power his father has amassed through illegal means. Dealing with his demons, he’s decided to make a difference in his life. By night he’s an underground MMA fighter and provides self defense classes to women, but by day he’s a mechanic and building his business as an owner of a gym. When he lays eyes on Tamara Eliot whose stepped into his gym, everything about her screams expensive and privileged. He needs to stay away from her kind, he’s been there, done that. But she’s so damn tempting. Everything about Tamara is a facade. She’s only pretending to like the life her parents has chosen for her. A tragic event in her past leaves Tamara feeling like her compliance is payment for a debt owed to her parents. Her ordered life of rules and expectations has her tied in knots, she can’t take living a lie much longer. When she sets eyes on Zee, she knows he’s exactly the man she needs. With Zee, all her control all melt away and she can truly be herself. She never expected he’d set her on fire, lose her heart to him and never look back. There’s lots of sizzling steam, practically combustible when these two get together. Car sex, public sex. But don’t worry, they don’t get caught. *g* If you’re wanting an easy romance this isn’t it, but these two characters work perfectly. The ending had me worried and anxious over Zee and Tamara, but it was such a satisfying twist at the end, and romantic. And the epilogue rounded this story very nicely. Wonderful job, Ms. Aschenden. Copy provided by Kensington Books through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
Maria-Rose More than 1 year ago
Dirty For Me is the first story in Jackie Ashenden’s new Motor City Royals series, set on the gritty streets of Detroit. If you’ve never read a Jackie Ashenden book before–and really, if you have–and if sexual tension in a romance is your thing, you are in for a treat. She skillfully weaves intense plots with enough drama and sexual situations to make for the kind of story that is difficult to put down once you start. From the moment Zee and Tamara lock eyes with each other, you know they are going to be in for a rough and sexy ride. There is no preamble, no “getting to know you” conversation before that first encounter in the back of Zee’s car. It’s pure unadulterated lust, but the best kind. From that point on it’s not a question of if, but when they will see each other again. It’s a talented author who can take a seemingly hopeless situation and give us a happy and satisfactory ending when all is said and done. This is a fun and sexy ride and I can't wait to read the next one in the series!
lucy117 More than 1 year ago
I was given ARC copy for review and Kensington Books. Dirty Hot and dirty Sexy!! Tamara Lennox and Ezekiel ( Zee) West both have secrets that has made them who they are. Tamara has boyfriend that her family wants to her to marry. Zee is the bad boy who is willing to show Tamara some dirty fun for now. Will Zee past stop him from getting what he wants or will Tamara get married.
Rhondaz More than 1 year ago
Dirty For Me by Jackie Ashenden....Oh how I love bad boys and Zee is perfect in everyway. The story is so well written, dirty and gritty, which makes for a enjoyable read. Zee and Tamara's chemistry is off the charts, so hot. Jackie Ashenden is moving up the charts for one of my favorite authors. I was given a complimentary book by publisher via NetGalley for an honest review.
Bette313 More than 1 year ago
Another great read from this author. With characters that are raw, real, and flawed I was immediately pulled into this good girl meets bad boy story. Seriously steamy and intense, the story of two people from vastly different worlds coming together is fantastic. Tamara Eliot works hard every day to gain her parents approval, respect, and forgiveness. It seems though that no matter what she does it isn't quite enough. Zee Chase left home as a teenager. Not willing to be part of the crime world his father lives in, he was lucky enough to find people he willingly calls family. When Tamara and Zee first meet they each judge the other as lacking but there is just something there, a spark which quickly becomes a flame. What is meant to be one intense passionate encounter soon turns into more but he will never be welcome in her world and she's not safe in his. I highly recommend this one.
mamalovestoread22 More than 1 year ago
Looking at Zee Chase you would never think he came from the upper crust side of the world, probably because he has done all he can to separate himself from that world, and he has no intention of every going back to it. During the day he turns a wrench in a garage with his friends, and by night he's known as a bad ass in the underground fighting world, and occasionally puts his fighting skills to good use by teaching women how to defend themselves in his self defense classes. The women come from all over the city to sign up for his classes not only to learn how to keep themselves safe, but also get a up close and personal with the man with all the bulging muscles... but he has rules, he doesn't date his students, and he definitely doesn't date wealthy women. But after one unexpected encounter with a privileged woman who tags along with a friend to one of his classes and he soon starts to reconsider breaking one of his cardinal rules... she is beautiful and tempting as hell, and he wants one night with her! Tamara Eliot is a privileged beauty from the corporate world that is working hard to prove to her family that she doesn't need their endorsement in the working world, and that she can earn her status in the business world on her own merit. She likes to hold complete control over everything in her life, and works very hard to maintain her growing success in the office, which leaves very little time for her to have a social life, but that doesn't keep her friend from trying to get her to let loose once in a while. After some pestering her friend convinces her to attend a self defense class with her, so she can try and land the instructor in her bed for the night, and Tamara agrees to tag along for moral support only. But once the class ends, her friend ditches her to party with classmates and leaves her to find her own way home... which puts her right in the path of the sexy instructor. After spending a little time with him, she finds herself thinking non-stop about a world she's never dreamed of wandering into... and it is so damn tempting!! Having been a while since my last book by Ms. Ashenden, I had forgotten just how much I loved her sexy little tales, but barely paragraph into it and I was quickly reminded of the literary bliss her books provide! From the moment Zee waltzed onto the page I found myself instantly smitten with him, and continued to fall hard for him with each sentence I read... you just don't find characters quite like him too often. He was every bit an alpha, but underneath his protective and gritty exterior was a man with a gentle spirit, and watching him fall for Tamara was truly a beautiful thing to witness! The chemistry between them was undeniable, their relationship was intensely passionate, raw, and filled with lots of steamy action that left me blushing more than a few times! I LOVED every minute of their story, and I can't wait to dive into the next installment and get better acquainted with more of these intriguing characters!! ARC requested through NetGalley, and kindly provided by Kensington Books in exchange for a honest and unbiased review.